Studio Class at UC Berkeley
Studio Class at UC Berkeley

Museum of Endangered Bees

This project was developed by Daniela Langer as a student from University of Kansas and was submited to the WAS awards 2017 under the Facilities category.

I wanted my Museum of Endangered Bees in Dallas to look dramatic and amongst other things achieve it with different heights. After doing some research I saw how perfect healthy bee colonies looked like and that “collapsed” bee colonies looked less symmetrical and do not consist of the perfect hexagons anymore. That led me to the idea of making my museum go from perfect to deformed, leading the visitors through 3 different visitor experiences:
1.  First part of the gallery: open, lots of daylight, visitor should feel comfortable, room looks inviting.
(Exhibition could be about general information about bees and how the situation was in the past)
2.  Middle part of the gallery: less daylight, space does not consist of perfect hexagons anymore, visitor should feel less comfortable. (Exhibition could be about the question: What is happening to our environment that bees are endangered? What can we do to prevent them from going extinct etc.)
3. Last part of the gallery: almost no daylight, rooms are not open anymore, walls in between, visitor should feel disoriented and not comfortable. (Exhibition is about what is going to happen in the future if bees go extinct. Conveys the message how important they are for our lives)

The galleries are cascading with each floor being 5 feet higher. When visitors arrive at the top they take the ramp on the side of the building down again. They can either enter the café or take the elevator down to the first floor again. The outside area of the café is an extension the existing sculpture park. Other museum functions are located on the first floor under the galleries.
The collapsed part of the colony is raised above ground for a visual and dramatic experience and the ceilings tilt more and more when getting closer to the collapsed part. The skylights on the roof are also gradually deforming. Carbonized cladding is used to enhance the design concept.